We’re delighted to introduce you to Jooeun Bae, the winner of the Shutter Hub Portfolio Award at FORMAT 2022.
Shutter Hub Creative Director, Karen Harvey, selected Jooeun’s portfolio which includes her project ‘Mono-‘ a process led (photographed, printed, folded, collaged, photographed again) and very gentle project, about the appreciation of objects and people.
I am very thrilled to be a part of the Shutter Hub community because Shutter Hub is all about helping and supporting photographers worldwide. Working as a freelance photographer, the most challenging obstacle is working alone. It makes sense for me to create my projects; however, it is essential to be part of a community that can support each other and helps artists to develop and improve themselves. And I found that caring community, Shutter Hub! Therefore, I am excited to see what story I will be making with them!
‘Mono-‘ is the title of my recent handmade collage series. The initial springboard of making ‘Mono-‘ is a lockdown. I work at home, but I had to and still have to limit myself to getting out of my place because of pandemics. Spending most of my time at home led me to interact more with my surroundings, especially the objects I use every day. I paid closer attention to them, and I noticed physical proofs on the things, showing how much time they spent with me. Although I use the items every day, it was my first time noticing their unique details on them. Then I reflected on myself how I’ve taken them for granted. I never pay much attention, even if they are always there for me, and sadly, that is what I do with the people I am close to.
Thus, I connect the dots between how I treat everyday objects and how I treat people who are always there for me. It’s very ironic, but the closer I am to the people, the more I undervalue them. I want to show each person’s unique individuality through the daily items. Therefore, for ‘Mono-,’ I choose 30 everyday objects, I use, as a metaphor for 30 people that I often undervalue the worth of those close to me merely because I have gotten comfortable with having them around. Each object represents each person. I write simple sentences on every piece to describe who I am talking about. I photograph each item and then print the photos to handcraft collages. The series reveals each object’s individuality and uniqueness through handmade collages, unlike the usual photographs that can be reproduced. Frames of the works are hand-painted along with the handwritten descriptions next to the preserved collages to emphasise each person’s individuality. Similar to making one-off collage works, I hope we can acknowledge and perceive the uniqueness of the people around us.
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